The Shakespeare Sigma Commercial rod range features two-piece carbon blanks with powerful, but progressive, actions. These rods are designed to allow for accurate casting and making the playing of hard-fighting fish easier and faster.
Sigma Commercial 11ft Float
Sigma Commercial 10ft Float
Sigma Commercial 11ft Feeder
Sigma Commercial 10ft Feeder
Every match or pleasure angler who catches big fish on commercial pools should have a rod like this in their holdall.
Carrying a full recommended retail price of just £39.99 (although you’ll find it even cheaper if you shop around a bit), it’s eminently affordable.
With two equal-length sections, the 10ft rod is easy to carry ready rigged for action. Its composite carbon and glass construction generates a fast casting action, and it plays fish firmly yet forgivingly.
I was soon to experience its qualities at close range as I ran the rule over this Shakespeare 10ft Feeder, part of the famous firm’s new four-rod Sigma Commercial range.
The kind of venue I would choose for a feeder/lead rod of this type is a small to medium-sized commercial pool of between 20 and 40 pegs, with required casting distances of 15m-40m. The open-water strip lakes at fish-filled Decoy Lakes near Peterborough fit the bill perfectly, and so armed with some timely advice from Angling Times deputy editor Kevin Wilmot, I aimed for a peg at the top end of Oak Lake.
A few exploratory casts down the lake with different weights of feeder confirmed the casting credentials of the new Sigma, which are amazing for such a short rod. The fast tapering blank has a high weight loading point, matched with impressive poke from its butt section, and will cast feeders and straight leads of up to 40g more than 35 metres. This is more than enough for most commercials.
My casting target on the day was actually little more than 25m, enough to position a 15g flatbed Method feeder tight up against the only feature in the lake, a paddle-type aerator. Pinpoint accuracy was needed, and the sparky little Sigma didn’t disappoint.
The blank is recommended for use with reel lines up to 8lb – quite heavy, in other words – and hooklengths from 0.12mm upwards.
The rod’s most outstanding asset, though, has to be its splendid progressive action. Far from being wetter than a haddock’s bathing costume, it manages to blend a soft tip with a fast-tapering mid-section, which makes the playing of big fish quick and easy, never stiff or overpowering.
My first fish of the day proved the point when the quivertip (two graded carbon tips of 1.5oz and 2oz are supplied) slammed round hard as a big kipper made off with my double corn hookbait. The rod did its job nicely, absorbing every lunge and run all the way to the net.
This is normally when most big fishtend to come off the hook, but not this time! The blank kept the fish under close arrest without any worries that it was about to slip the handcuffs and escape.
A very impressive rod from Shakespeare, and impossible to fault, given such a low asking price. It casts well, has a super power-playing progressive action, and could turn its cork handle to conquer most feeder and straight lead commercial fishery situations.